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Why does Canvas allow students access to "hidden" areas?

Question asked by Jo Rodgers on Oct 14, 2017
Latest reply on Feb 15, 2018 by

When I copied a course to this term's shell, I reset all dates for the course. I have over 100 discussion topics, most of which are used each term, stored in the Discussions area. In the new shell, there are a few old discussion topics that are currently not being used for the course. They have been removed from the Modules area, which is the only content area open to students. Students should only be able to enter discussions through Modules.

A student was able to enter a discussion that is no longer a part of the course, but is still sitting in the Discussions area. I am now forced to give a grade to a student for posting to a discussion invisible to the class.

Testing this, I found, through the Student View, that a student can click on To Do  or Coming Up from the Home page and then go to the top of that page and click on Discussions. Even though I do not have a live link to Discussions, this would allow students to access the entire list of discussions. I am constantly sending messages to students reminding them to click on Modules to see all of the discussion threads each week, rather than click on To Do or Coming Up.

Why does Canvas allow students to access content that is not a part of the current course and is stored in a “hidden” area? How can I prevent students from gaining access to Discussions?